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Here’s a quick list of tips I wish I’d know before diving into my projects! Take my advice and so you don’t have to learn from mistakes. (Sometimes that is the best way to learn.)
1.) The best tool you can use for weeding vinyl is a good ole pair of tweezers.
You do not want to know how many designs I’ve ruined using the hook tool to weed my vinyl. So. Much. Wasted. Vinyl. Especially tiny designs. The second I switched over to tweezers, my life was changed.
I use these inexpensive ones that I bought at Target.
I’ve found that the slanted point ones are the best for getting the tiny pieces up. Don’t get me wrong, I do love the hook tool but it’s not ideal to use for small weeding projects.
2.) You can wash your cutting mats!
Okay, I know a lot of people already know this but I didn’t. I shared a post of an easy way to store my cutting mats after washing them and so many ladies reached out to me wondering how I washed them! All I used was a little dawn dish soap and warm water. I just used my hand and rubbed the mat clean and made sure I rinsed all of the soap off. Hang it to dry! I use magnetic chip clips stuck to the refrigerator. Once dry it’s like new. It does lose it’s stick after a few washes but check out Therm O Web’s blog post here on an easy way to re-stick your cutting mat.
3.) Speaking of Cutting Mats- buy inexpensive ones off Amazon.
I currently own these ones and I recommend them over and over again. 3 for 10.99?! And they come straight to your door step. Talking about winning!
4.) Looking for an inexpensive way to store you vinyl?
12 by 12 Scrapbooking Case. I got this one from Michael’s. It’s so slim and convenient. I like keeping my vinyl flat to keep it from rolling up. Also Michael’s almost always has a 40% coupon you can use!
5.) Learn how to thicken small fonts!
Honestly, this should be one of the first things you learn. It makes weeding a breeze. I looove skinny cursive fonts but for the first month almost every time I cut one it went to waste.
I swear by Cutting For Business’s blog. Her tips are so easy to follow and THIS ONE for how to thicken your font for cutting is extremely helpful. Look around while you are there. I found so much information through this blog.
6.) Find a designated area to put your extra vinyl while weeding.
I use an EOS metal tin that came with a bundle of chap stick I got for Christmas. These metal buckets would work great as well. I’ve also seen small metal tins at the dollar tree. Just put the tin next to you and put all your small vinyl scraps in there. Then take it and empty it once finished.
It makes clean up a breeze! They are also small enough to keep on your desk so they are always in reach.
7.) Find eBooks and Tutorials Online!
Join a facebook group or find an online group. I use Silhouette School Blog! All kinds of tutorials, eBooks, Silhouette U…it really is a life saver! You can also get discounts for buying vinyls and places to get freebies on SVGS.
8.) The Last Thing I’ll leave you with is to Learn about Copyright and/ Trademark.
If you plan on making and selling ANYTHING, please do research on what you can sell. Just because you buy a graphic from a website does not mean you can put in on a shirt to sell. Also, using words like ‘Onesie’ or ‘Koozie’ while advertising things to sell, is a huge no.
If you have Chrome there is a convenient extension you can download. It’s called Tangent Tess. It takes you straight to Trademark Search and makes it super simple to look up words and phrases. You can download the extension here.
What tips and tricks do you think everyone should know?! Comment below!
Feel free to share to help out all my fellow newbies. 🙂